Wisconsin’s technical colleges win three-year, $20 million federal grant

by dritger30. October 2014 12:30

Wisconsin’s health care employers and workers will benefit from a $20 million investment by the U.S. Department of Labor, which recently announced a grant to Wisconsin’s technical colleges to address emerging needs in the health care sector. 

The successful grant application comes under the fourth installment of a multi-year, nearly $2 billion federal community college initiative designed to increase credential attainment in high-priority economic sectors. In previous rounds, Wisconsin’s technical colleges won grants to expand innovative programs that produce high-skilled workers in information technology ($23.1 million in 2013) and manufacturing ($18.3 million in 2012). 

The most recent three-year grant, dubbed “ACT for Health Care” (Advancing Careers and Training for Healthcare), provides $15 million to a consortium of the state’s technical colleges to deliver training and support services for eligible workers, veterans, and other adults, preparing them for high-growth careers in the health care sector. Moraine Park Technical College, with campuses in Beaver Dam, Fond du Lac and West Bend, received $641,776 to enhance and expand their Medical Assistant program including creating an accelerated format, which will allow additional students to get off of the waitlists and to complete the program in less than a year. The College will also develop and implement credit-for-prior-learning assessments for the Medical Assistant program courses.

This round also includes a $5 million, three-year grant to the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) to oversee technical assistance, professional development, and shared learning that advances career pathways across sectors and regions in Wisconsin. Career pathways organize curriculum and services around flexible, “stackable” modules that progressively build over the course of a career. 

“These one-time federal funds allow us to advance a more robust initiative in support of our health care sector than would be possible otherwise,” said WTCS President Morna Foy. “In the past three years, the Department of Labor has provided a strong complement to our core state and local funding.” 

Wisconsin’s technical colleges received the largest single award and the collaborative is one of the few applicants to successfully receive grants in each of the past three years. Work under the latest grant officially began October 1.



Moraine Park makes Military Friendly Schools list for fifth year

by dritger23. October 2014 10:59

Moraine Park Technical College is pleased to be included in Victory Media’s 2015 list of Military Friendly Schools for the fifth consecutive year for its excellence in serving veterans as students. 

This prestigious award recognizes the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools nationwide who embrace America’s veterans as students. The complete list can be viewed by visiting militaryfriendlyschools.com.  

“Moraine Park is honored to again be included on the 2015 list of Military Friendly Schools,” Dr. Sheila Ruhland, Moraine Park president, said. “I am grateful for our staff and faculty who have taken the initiative to make sure we have many resources available to veteran students.” 

Moraine Park has numerous resources available to military and veteran students, including the Student Veterans Association (SVA) club. The SVA meets regularly to provide information about educational opportunities offered at Moraine Park. The club allows students to ask questions and meet with other military students and veterans providing a support system that helps veteran and military members smoothly transition from military life to college and careers. 

“As a military veteran who is still serving in the Air National Guard, I habitually take time to educate our staff on not only the challenges today’s student veterans may be facing, but also the progressive life experiences, leadership and skills they bring to our college and classrooms,” Scott Lieburn, Moraine Park dean of students, said. “This past year, Moraine Park hired a Student Veterans Specialist who works on a team with our Veterans Certifying Official and the Moraine Park Student Veterans Association to help our student veterans achieve their educational goals and dreams.”

Schools on the list range from state universities and private colleges to community and technical colleges and trade schools. The common bond is their shared priority of recruiting students with military experience. Schools on the Military Friendly Schools list also offer additional benefits to student veterans such as on-campus veterans programs, credit for service and military spouse programs. Criteria for making the Military Friendly Schools list included efforts to recruit and retain military and veteran students, results in recruiting military and veteran students, and academic accreditations. 

For more information on Moraine Park’s Veteran Services, visit morainepark.edu/veterans


Moraine Park students impact Wisconsin’s hospitality sector

by dritger13. October 2014 08:15

Moraine Park Technical College, along with Lakeshore and Fox Valley technical colleges, recently spent an evening showcasing the value-added role Wisconsin’s technical colleges play in driving the state’s hospitality and tourism sector. Wisconsin tourism had a $17.5 billion impact on the state’s economy last year, and developing a workforce that can cater to the continued growth of this industry begins with Wisconsin’s technical colleges. 

Moraine Park Culinary Arts student, Joan Ortencio of Sheboygan, prepares savory tapas for a full house at the Wisconsin Technical College System’s Hospitality Event.

“Our colleges take pride in delivering programs that are industry-driven and that promote growth in this key sector. That’s great for our students and graduates, too.” said Morna Foy, Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) president.

The WTCS hospitality event was held at Lakeshore Culinary Institute in Sheboygan and featured a myriad of culinary creations from the three college’s culinary arts programs, along with keynote speakers from the tourism industry. Jason Mengel, director of the Championship with the PGA of America, presented how the 2015 PGA will impact tourism in the region, and nationally acclaimed chef, Stefano Viglietti, shared his experiences as owner of four successful fine dining establishments in the Sheboygan area.

“Our employer partners are counting on us to deliver the skilled individuals that make their business thrive. That’s at the core of what we do.” said Foy.

A key strategy for meeting the skill needs of individuals and employers is instruction designed along career pathways that result in “stackable” credentials, industry-based certifications and clear career progression. With 20 distinct hospitality programs currently offered at Wisconsin’s technical colleges, including Hotel & Restaurant Management, Meeting & Event Management, Culinary Arts, Special Event Management, Food Production and Golf Course Management, the hospitality sector will continue to see experts and entrepreneurs entering the industry with the talent to feed this sector going forward.

To learn more about the Technical College Effect on Tourism and Hospitality, visit wistechcolleges.org or join the conversation at #techcollegeeffect. 

For information about Moraine Park’s Culinary Arts programs, visit morainepark.edu/programs.


Moraine Park graduates welding & CNC boot camp classes

by dritger8. October 2014 09:23

Moraine Park Technical College is proud to graduate two more classes from the Manufacturing Skills Academy. Ten students graduated from the welding training and nine from the Computer Numeric Control (CNC) machinist training. In total, Moraine Park has had 115 students graduate from the Skills Academy since induction.

From left: Reggie Newson, secretary of Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development; Jim Eden, MPTC vice president of academic affairs; Shelly Bartz of Oshkosh; John Rickmeyer of North Fond du Lac; Crystal Moreau of Fond du Lac; Tyler Baszynski of Beaver Dam; Travis Thomas of North Fond du Lac; Andrew Mayworm of West Bend; Mario Ramirez of Fond du Lac; Bernard Brady of Fond du Lac; Jim Bavers of Juneau; Jeremias Schwabe of Kewaskum.

From left: Jim Eden, MPTC vice president of academic affairs; Reggie Newson, secretary of Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development; David Hartjes of Watertown; Dale Curran of Grafton; Daniel Lors of Ripon; Karen Lardinois of Appleton; Christopher Gullickson of West Bend; Kurt Woosencraft of Fond du Lac; Collin Ludwig of Grafton; Daniel Kauzlaric of Fond du Lac; Troy Niemuth, CNC instructor; Daniel McGinn of Waukesha.

“These boot camps are one of the reasons why Wisconsin’s manufacturing industry is booming,” stated Cliff Sanderson, vice president of Human Resources at MEC. “MEC is growing because of this program and its students.”

The boot camps combine a 72-hour paid internship with coursework, including Occupational Math, Print Reading, Team Building and Problem Solving and courses specific to their program. Skill training for CNC includes basic programming, machining and turning center, while welding students learn welding and cutting techniques. 

Both the welding and CNC boot camps are funded by grant dollars. The welding training is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor TAACCCT grant, and the CNC training is funded by the Wisconsin Workforce Partnership grant from The Wisconsin Covenant Foundation, Inc. 

Those who completed the CNC boot camp include: Dale Curran and Collin Ludwig of Grafton; Christopher Gullickson of West Bend; David Hartjes of Watertown; Daniel Kauzlaric and Kurt Woosencraft of Fond du Lac; Karen Lardinois of Appleton; Daniel Lors of Ripon; and Daniel McGinn of Waukesha. Completing the welding boot camp were: Shelley Bartz of Oshkosh; Tyler Baszynski of Beaver Dam; Jim Bavers of Juneau; Bernard Brady, Crystal Moreau and Mario Ramirez of Fond du Lac; Andrew Mayworm of West Bend; John Rickmeyer and Travis Thomas of North Fond du Lac; and Jeremias Schwabe of Kewaskum.

“Never give up,” welding instructor Andy Luby stated. “Today you can walk out with the confidence that you have the skills to do the job.”

For more information about Moraine Park’s Manufacturing Skills Academies, visit morainepark.edu/bootcamps



Moraine Park holds Career Showcase October 8

by dritger1. October 2014 10:43

Moraine Park Technical College is hosting Career Showcase, an event for anyone interested in learning about programs and services offered at the College. The event will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 8, from 4:00 to 6:30 p.m. at Moraine Park’s Fond du Lac and West Bend campuses. Attendees can stop in anytime.

Instructors and staff will be on hand to answer questions about programs, classroom experiences and the employment outlook. Staff from advising, financial aid, the career center and student services will also be available to guide students and families through the admissions process. A $30 application fee waiver will be offered to attendees. Some restrictions apply. 

For more information about the event or to register, visit morainepark.edu/showcase. Registration for the event is strongly encourage but not required. 



Moraine Park to host Sexual Assault Awareness speaker

by dritger1. October 2014 10:43

Moraine Park Technical College is pleased to welcome Katie Koestner, a leader in the movement to end sexual violence, as a guest speaker at all three Moraine Park campuses. 

Koestner will speaking on the West Bend campus on Monday, Oct. 6, at 11:30 a.m., in the Commons Area. Following West Bend, she will be speaking at the Fond du Lac campus on Monday, Oct. 6, at 2:00 p.m., in Room A-112. On Tuesday, Oct. 7, she will be speaking at the Beaver Dam campus at 12 p.m., in the Commons Area. This event is free to the public.

Koestner, a national expert on student safety and wellness issues, was the first survivor of date rape to speak out publicly at the age of 18. Koestner will tell her personal date rape story and provide a general overview of sexual assault, as well as share resources and discuss bystander skills.

After appearing on the cover of Time magazine in June 1991, Koestner worked with HBO to make a documentary film about her story.  Her testimony on Capitol Hill was instrumental in the passage of federal student safety legislation. She has also appeared on many television programs, including “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” NBC’s “Nightly News” and “Good Morning America.” 

Please register for this event with Sam Saeger, student involvement specialist, at ssaeger@morainepark.edu or 920-924-3101.

For more information about Moraine Park, visit morainepark.edu



Higher education institutions host diversity conference on Oct. 16

by dritger29. September 2014 15:50

A free conference “Understanding Socioeconomic Inequality” will be held 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 16, at the University of Wisconsin-Fond du Lac, 400 University Dr., Fond du Lac.

The four higher education institutions of Fond du Lac County - Marian University, Moraine Park Technical College, Ripon College and the University of Wisconsin-Fond du Lac - are collaborating on this event supporting diversity and inclusion. Students and staff from these institutions and members of the Fond du Lac County community are invited to attend.

The keynote speaker is Terie Dreussi-Smith, co-author of “Bridges Out of Poverty; Strategies for Professionals and Communities.” The workshop will focus on frameworks for better understanding poverty and the hidden rules of economic class. 

This workshop will be personally enriching and educational, and also helpful in developing skills that are necessary for the 21st century workplace. Participants will leave with an introduction to better understanding economic inequalities in America and our own community. The morning, appropriate for everyone including college students, will focus on understanding poverty; its causes and impact; and the hidden rules of economic class. The afternoon will build on the morning’s session and is geared toward faculty, staff and community members who will explore how they can more effectively work with students and clients who come from impoverished backgrounds.

This conference is being planned by the Higher Education Diversity Initiative Team (HEDIT), recipient of the 2012 Spirit of MLK Award for their efforts in organizing yearly events that lead, inspire, educate and challenge students and the community to celebrate diversity. 

HEDIT is a team of faculty and staff formed by the presidents and CEOs of Fond du Lac County’s four higher education institutions to plan “an annual collaborative project designed to promote a climate of appreciation for all aspects of human diversity, supporting, fostering and welcoming inclusiveness, respect and dignity for all.” HEDIT’s mission is to lead, inspire, educate and challenge their institutions and the Fond du Lac County community in promoting diversity and inclusiveness. This is HEDIT’s sixth annual event.

There is no fee for the workshop but advance registration is required online at www.marianuniversity.edu/hedit. Bussing from Ripon College and Marian University is provided and information can be found during online registration. 

For more information on this conference e-mail Kyonna Withers at Ripon College, withersk@ripon.edu.



Moraine Park announces retirees, service honorees

by dritger29. September 2014 08:00

Moraine Park Technical College’s 2014 Retirement and Service Recognition event both honored and expressed gratitude to retirees and those who reached service anniversaries during the 2013-2014 academic year. 

 “This year we had 321 combined years of service from our retirees and 960 combined years from our staff members that received service recognition awards,” Dr. Sheila Ruhland, president of Moraine Park said. “We are very grateful for each of our retirees and staff who have contributed so much to Moraine Park throughout their years of service with our College.” Kathy Broske, vice president of human resources, announced the 13 retirees and presented service recognition awards to 76 staff members.

Retirees included Mary Alsteens, nursing instructor; Dana Rudolph, student support call center representative; Jon Shapiro, auxiliary services manager; and Holly Waldschmidt, academic advisor – all of Fond du Lac. Also included were Kathy Hirschboeck, administrative assistant; Gregory Harding, basic education instructor; Kathy Van Eerden, associate dean of nursing; and Patricia Hrobsky, nursing instructor – all of West Bend; Nancy Linger, of Markesan, office technology and computer applications instructor; Janet Yelk-Kenitz, of Madison, student support call center representative; Cindy Diemer, of Ripon, EWD community coordinator; Marlene Gerner, of Green Lake, administrative aide; and Connie Schaumberg, of Theresa, recruitment specialist.

Staff members honored for 25 years of service included: Lori Platt of Beaver Dam; Annie Sabel and Jodie Schneider of Fond du Lac; and Steve Waters of Eldorado.  Bonnie Bosin of Van Dyne and Kathleen VanDemark of Kewaskum, were honored for 30 years of service. Alfred Hanisch of Lomira was honored for 35 years of service. 

A special presentation was also made in remembrance of Denise Kryzanowski of Fond du Lac. Kryzanowski worked at Moraine Park as a Computer Lab Instructor and Administrative Assistant for the General Education Department for 11 years. She passed away in March following a courageous battle with melanoma.  

“Denise was a role model, as an employee and as a member of the community,” said Caron Daugherty, dean of general education. “Her Moraine Park knowledge and management skills kept General Education organized and operating efficiently, and she delivered exceptional customer service to our faculty, staff and students. As a member of Holy Family Parish, Kiwanis Club of Fabulous Fond du Lac, Moraine Park Relay for Life team, and a supporter of Fondy High School athletics, she lived a model life of service to our community.” 

Moraine Park also presented 59 employees with service recognition awards in the 5, 10, 15 and 20 year categories. For more information about Moraine Park Technical College, visit morainepark.edu.  


Moraine Park fall semester back in full swing

by dritger19. September 2014 14:38

With the fall semester underway, over 7,500 Moraine Park Technical College students are adjusting to the rigors of college classes and also enjoying the variety of student activities that provide them with a well-deserved break from studying. 

“We provide students with a mix of entertainment from comedians and national speakers on social issues, to bands, casino days and softball,” said Scott Lieburn, Moraine Park’s dean of students, who says the fall semester is off to a great start. “Our goal with these activities is to help provide opportunities for new and returning students to build relationships and use available resources.” 

One of those relationship-building activities occurred just prior to the semester starting and is one event Lieburn believes is crucial to helping student success and retention – the College’s Summer Welcome Day held at each of Moraine Park’s three campuses. An Amazing Race-themed activity during the Summer Welcome Day has students working together in teams using clues to find locations and complete challenges around the campus. Each challenge is designed to familiarize students with locations and services available to them as a Moraine Park student. Along with the race events, students also had the opportunity to meet staff and learn about student organizations.

Students cross the finish line at The Amazing Race.

“This is my first year at the Beaver Dam campus, and so far it has been the best school experience I have ever had,” said Logan Fergus, electrical power distribution student. “I love the technical college learning environment, and the welcome back activities made the whole experience really sink in.”

The Student Senate also sponsored a Welcome Back Lunch featuring entertainment by Nick Pike. The show combined juggling, stunts and fast-paced comedy. Students from the crowd helped Pike get on a unicycle and walk across glass. 

Moraine Park and the Student Senate have many other activities planned throughout the year that provide opportunities for the College community to get involved, have some fun and network.

“This is my fifth semester at Moraine Park, and the College continues to bring new activities that keep students involved,” commented Katrina Switzler, business management student. 

For more information about events and Moraine Park, visit morainepark.edu



Moraine Park accepts nominations for 2015 Distinguished Alumnus Award

by arepka19. September 2014 14:10

Moraine Park Technical College is now accepting nominations for its 2015 Distinguished Alumnus Award. 

Nominees must hold a one- or two-year technical diploma, associate degree or associate of applied science degree from a Moraine Park program. Additional criteria include demonstrated service and/or support of Moraine Park, the Wisconsin Technical College System and the community at large, as well as distinguishing oneself through a career or civic activity.

If you know of a deserving alumnus, submit your nomination by Friday, Jan. 23, 2015, to morainepark.edu/distinguishedalum

For more information about the Distinguished Alumnus Award, contact Debbie Bruins at 920-924-3263 or dbruins@morainepark.edu